Will XP software bought from Ebay work on my Macbook?

Discussion in 'Windows, Linux & Others on the Mac' started by anewfoundsin, Jun 20, 2009.

  1. anewfoundsin macrumors member

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    #1
    I need windows for school but they are very expensive. I have the a 13" macbook bought in dec 2008. I see people say to stay away from VISTA so I decided to get XP, its cheaper right? All I see on Ebay are these "FOR DISTRIBUTION WITH A NEW PC" Disks. Will this work fine as long as they are service pack and I use boot camp? Anyone installed these? Or should I dare for VISTA? I found a cheaper VISTA full version but its "DVD version" (does that make a difference?)

    All I really need is for ONE program which is some review software and I need to save money. And I need it to work with my bluetooth apple wireless keyboard and mouse.

    Any feedback would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.
     
  2. MacDawg macrumors P6

    MacDawg

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    #2
    Why not download Windows 7?
    It is free to use right now and is getting great reviews

    Woof, Woof - Dawg [​IMG]
     
  3. Tallest Skil macrumors P6

    Tallest Skil

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    #3
    I say get the Seven RC.

    Those disks are... what, OEM, I think? Likely they won't work well.
     
  4. redwarrior macrumors 603

    redwarrior

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  5. anewfoundsin thread starter macrumors member

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    #5
    how do i do this? even though i dont have windows on my mac??
     
  6. Dagless macrumors Core

    Dagless

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    #6
    It should work, if not you can rip the CD to the drive, slipstream a new Service Pack onto it et voila.
     
  7. anewfoundsin thread starter macrumors member

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    #7
    No its too much trouble (windows 7). i just want windows xp or vista, easiest to install and at cheapest price. is the one i looking at ebay good enough??
     
  8. redwarrior macrumors 603

    redwarrior

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    #8
    If you would like to point us to the ad you are looking at, we can probably make a more accurate suggestion.:)
     
  9. MacDawg macrumors P6

    MacDawg

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    #9
    What is so hard?
    Download from the MS website
    Burn the .iso to a DVD
    Install

    And it is the cheapest... free

    Woof, Woof - Dawg [​IMG]
     
  10. Apple //e macrumors 6502

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    #10
    yes, the oem disc will work perfectly. its just a plain xp disc for system integrators. you just get a disc and a number, no box. anyone that says it wont work well has no idea what they are talking about

    windows 7 is really easy to install, and burn to a dvd. best of all, its free. just google it
     
  11. umiwangu macrumors 6502

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    #11
    Tallest Skil is actually partly right... Some OEM disks check the computer on which they are being installed to see if it matches the original OEM. Like Dell OEM disks will check to make sure they are being installed on a Dell computer, Compaq disks will check to make sure they are being installed on a Compaq computer, etc. But that is only some OEM disks, others have worked fine for me (cross-OEM).
     
  12. bobnugget macrumors regular

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    #12
    Nah, Dell ones install on any PC, given that you have a key for them. I tried this when I didn't have my XP discs. It didn't work as they require an OEM key though, so you can't install a retail XP/2000 Key using an OEM disc (they have different key schemes - see Hexus forums). It would work with an OEM key, though.

    They usually install on any Dell without asking for a key. Not sure about Compaq ones. Bear in mind that your copy of Windows will NOT be legal though.
     
  13. umiwangu macrumors 6502

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    #13
    Thanks for the correction... I guess the activation is what I was thinking of. Although I do remember trying to use a Compaq disc in a non-Compaq computer and it told me the computer was not valid or something like that.
     
  14. bobnugget macrumors regular

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    #14
    Yup, some IBM ones do that too, but I think that was just Windows 2000. The dell ones will activate too (given that they haven't been activated on a dell recently or lots of times)
     
  15. mattwolfmatt macrumors 65816

    mattwolfmatt

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    #15
    He obviously does not want Windows 7, stop trying to push it on him! Also, what happens is 3 or 5 years when it "is no longer supported"? Or do you think he'll be able to use the free beta version indefinitely? I doubt it.

    I think others have noted that the OEM disk you get - while not entirely legal to use - will probably work. I'd just fork over the big bucks to get a legal copy. But that's just me.
     
  16. umiwangu macrumors 6502

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    #16
    These were XP...
     
  17. gugucom macrumors 68020

    gugucom

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    #17
    The version that you want to buy are System Builder Editions (SBE) of XP or VISTA. System Builder Editions are not linked with a hardware and do not have any modifications for OEM laptops which will cause you problems on install. So look specifically for these in XP and Vista. The package looks different. SBE come in an opaque molded polypropylene DVD case with a cardboard cover. Go for deals with PayPal because they will return your money if a vendor screws you with the deal. If you ask a question and have him confirm the SBE spec and he slips you a worthless OEM you can force him with PayPal.

    If you want most simple install go for XP SP2 as Bootcamp is optimized for this version. XP SP3 would also work but gives more trouble with driver installation. SP1 must be avoided because it doesn't work with Bootcamp at all without modifications to the registry. It can even screw your OS X. XP 64-Bit is also no good as Apple is not supporting it with drivers.

    Vista Business and Ultimate are both reasonable choices in 32 and 64 Bit versions. Be aware that 64-Bit can cause installation problems on older Macs like your 2008 MB with 32 bit EFI. The drivers are also more difficult to install. The advantage of 64-Bit is that they can address large RAM sizes above 2 GB which is more relevant to desktop machines and rendering programs. So it probably isn't right for you.

    In terms of price Vista is sometimes cheaper on Ebay because XP is discontinued by Microsoft and will soon not be available from shops. Vista isn't so bad if you disable all the crap MS has put into it that isn't needed.
     
  18. steveza macrumors 68000

    steveza

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    #18
    W7 RC (it's not beta anymore) will be complete usable until March 2010 and partially usable until July 2010 which isn't bad considering that it's free. It's also a far superior OS compared to XP and Vista so it's right to encourage people to use this. It's also right for as many people as possible to install the RC and use different hardware and software configurations to shake out any bugs before it is completed.
     
  19. bryl3 macrumors newbie

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    #19
    Just Make Sure It Comes With a Key

    From everything I've found on line and been told, most OEM versions work well with Bootcamp. However, I can't stress enough, you need that activation key. I'd ask the vendor if it comes with an activation key. Typically, the key is on a sticker that is placed on the PC (when the software is sold along with a computer on which it is installed). There shouldn't be a problem installing it on your Mac, as long as that sticker/key isn't missing.

    I had this problem about a month ago with an OEM version of XP I ordered through Amazon Marketplace. The software was going through the install fine, but when it asked for the activation key, there was no number to be found. Some people on line suggested the key number could be found in a folder on the disk. I did find what was an activation key in that folder, but it did not work.

    In my case, Amazon/the vender refunded my money, and I sprung for a new version of XP.

    So again: confirm with the vendor that the disc has the activation key with it.

    Good Luck.
     
  20. Apple //e macrumors 6502

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    #20
    i think there is some confusion here between an oem xp disc and an oem restore disc.

    an oem xp disc is meant to be sold with other hardware. it is not meant for retail. it comes in a plain envelope with a serial number. it is bit for bit exactly the same as a retail xp disc. you can install this on any machine legally using the included serial.

    an oem restore disc is an image of a preinstalled installation plus drivers and other software the system integrator includes with it. you cannot install these on anything other but the systems it was meant for. these come pre authorized and the serial is on the computer you bought.

    afaik there are no oem xp discs that only work on some machines. if it is an "oem xp" disc it will work. it will come with a license. period.
     
  21. gugucom macrumors 68020

    gugucom

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    #21
    Recovery disks may or may not work depending on the modifications that the OEM has made to the MS image. So bundeled OEM disks are always a risk.

    Retail is safe to buy but generally too expensive due to the additional support that isn't really worth the money.

    SBE is the version of choice because it is a genuine MS image that will always work consistently. With Vista SBE you even get the option to order a replacement disk if you break it or bought the wrong version. If you want to change from 32-Bit to 64-Bit you can purchase a replacement at a very reasonable price.
     
  22. Apple //e macrumors 6502

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    Jun 21, 2003
    #22
    the one on the right is the one op wants.

    avoid the ones on the left

    some of the discs on the left can work and some can be made to work via nlite or slipstreaming (delete oem folder) but might as well buy the proper one.
     

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  23. gugucom macrumors 68020

    gugucom

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    #23
    The right one is actually a System Builder Edition. You can recognize it from the grey cardboard cover and the distinctive hologram on the disk. I bet it will also say System Builder Edition somewhere on the disk and the cover.
     

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